Vaccine Injury Compensation Program Lawyers
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What is the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP)?
The Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, or “VICP”, provides compensation for persons who have been injured by various childhood vaccines. The program went into effect in the fall of 1988. The VICP allows eligible applicants to file their vaccine injury claims through a streamlined process, whereby they receive compensation through a Vaccine Recovery Fund. The fund is supported by small taxes on vaccines.
What Types of Vaccines Does VICP Cover?
The Vaccine Injury Compensation Program mostly covers injuries resulting from childhood vaccinations. The list of vaccines may be subject to change as new vaccines are created. These include:
- Hepatitis A and B
- Chicken Pox
- Measles and Mumps
- Pneumococcal (PCV)
- Meningococcal disease
- Human Papilomavirus (HPV)
- Diptheria/Tetanus/Pertussis (DTP or DPT)
Who is Eligible for Compensation Through the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program?
The following persons can file a VICP claim:
- People who believe they may have been injured by one of the listed vaccines
- Parents or legal guardians of the person injured
- The estate representative of a person who died due to a vaccine injury
These persons must provide proof that the injury was caused by one of the vaccines covered under VICP. In addition, there is a table of injuries provided in the VICP. The applicant will have a greater chance of obtaining compensation if their injury is listed in this table. If it isn’t, they may need to provide evidence of the extent of their injury. Applicants can also recover for pre-existing conditions that were “aggravated” or made worse by a vaccine.
Lastly, the injury needs to have lasted for a minimum of 6 months after the vaccine was administered. The injury must have resulted in a stay in the hospital and surgery, or resulted in the person’s death.
What Types of Losses are Covered by the VICP?
Under the VICP, injured persons may be reimbursed for:
- Past/future medical and rehabilitative care
- Pain and suffering costs, up to$250,00
- Lost wages or earnings
- Attorney’s fees and court costs, up to a “reasonable” amount
For representatives of deceased victims, they can recover up to $250,000 as a death benefit, plus attorney’s fees and court costs.
Do I Need a Lawyer to Help Me File a VICP Claim?
To file a claim under the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, you’ll need to file a legal petition with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. Most persons hire a lawyer for help when filing a VICP claim, since it involves a great deal of paperwork and many legal forms. VICP claims usually cover attorney’s fees. It’s in your best interests to hire a qualified, experienced lawyer in your area to assist you throughout the process. If you have a non-VICP claim, you may be able to pursue a private civil lawsuit against a doctor or manufacturer.
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Last Modified: 04-17-2012 11:13 AM PDT
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